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Fueled by Farms
ShopRite of Hunterdon County, like many other ShopRite stores, relies on local farms to bring high quality produce to customers.
“Shop local” isn’t just a snappy slogan, especially when it comes to feeding your family. Locally grown produce can be fresher and more sustainable – and it supports local farmers.
“We go out of our way to find farmers who can get fresh product to us as quickly as possible,” said Bob Mirabella, a Perishables merchandiser with ShopRite of Hunterdon County, “so we’re often sourcing from 10 or 12 local farms.”
In the summer months, the vast majority of vegetables at ShopRite of Hunterdon County come from farms in New Jersey, New York or Pennsylvania. Most peaches and nectarines come from southern New Jersey. In fact, Mirabella’s biggest produce supplier – family-owned Donaldson Farms – is in nearby Hackettstown. The farm delivers corn, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and squash the day after they’re harvested or, in some cases, the same day.
“They pick the corn at six in the morning,” Mirabella said, “and it’s in our stores by 10 a.m. It’s really fresh.”
Sourcing locally also means the food travels far fewer miles from farm to store than when the farm is in California, Florida or elsewhere. Local sourcing reduces fuel consumption, carbon emissions and costs. However, it also requires extra effort. Before Mirabella begins sourcing from a farm, he visits that farm, taste-tests its products and talks to the farmers about their practices.
Many local farms are too small to deliver directly to ShopRite stores, so Mirabella works with a distribution service based in Ringoes, New Jersey to find producers. Through that relationship, he discovered Profeta Farms, a certified organic livestock and vegetable producer in Flemington.
“I went on a tour last year,” Mirabella said, “and it’s a beautiful farm run by nice people and, more importantly, offering a beautiful product. “When you deal with certain farms, you know they take a lot of care in what they do and won’t send you a product unless it’s right. Those are the people you want to work with, and Profeta Farms is one of those farms.”
Profeta Farms’ products are certified United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Organic, which means they’re made without genetically modified organisms (GMOs) and without harmful pesticides and synthetic fertilizers. The USDA also requires certified organic producers to show they’re “protecting natural resources and conserving biodiversity.” Profeta’s owners take pride in going beyond the USDA’s requirements by employing practices that reduce soil erosion and allow livestock to roam free, all of which contribute to the farm’s sustainability and help protect the local environment.
Mirabella likes to forge long-term relationships with local farmers and other producers. It allows him to bring ShopRite customers the best product he can find....
Click on the links below to see which Healthy Living Events are happening in your store and community
ShopRite Today … Families Serving Families
From a small, struggling cooperative with eight Members – all owners of their own grocery stores – Wakefern Food Corp., the merchandising and distribution arm for ShopRite, has grown into the largest retailer-owned cooperative in the United States and the largest employer in New Jersey. The cooperative is comprised of 50 members who individually own and operate supermarkets under the ShopRite banner. Today, Wakefern and ShopRite together employ more than 50,000 people throughout New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland.
At ShopRite, generations of families have served generations of their customers’ families. Although they have grown from the small “Mom and Pop” stores of the 1940’s, most ShopRite stores are still family owned and operated businesses – many with second, third, or even fourth generations involved.
All ShopRite owners are members of Wakefern Food Corp., which buys, warehouses and transports products while providing other support services to ensure customer satisfaction. “Volume” buying enables ShopRite stores to offer their consumers the lowest overall prices, and the greatest value, in the marketplace.
Headquartered in Keasbey, New Jersey, Wakefern operates over 2.5 million square feet of grocery and non-food warehousing. Its transportation fleet, one of the largest private fleets on the east coast, consists of 400 tractors and 2,000 trailers, and travels more than 35 million miles annually. For more information on Wakefern Food Corp., please visit www.wakefern.com.
ShopRite is dedicated to supporting the communities in its trading areas. ShopRite has been a long time supporter of the Community Food Bank of New Jersey, donating food, services, money and contributing hundreds of volunteer hours each year. An additional focus of community support is the education and training of special needs students to prepare them for meaningful careers in the supermarket industry. This innovative and groundbreaking program – Supermarket Careers – was created by ShopRite in 1989, and is now in place in 42 schools throughout the company’s six state area. The program has received local, state and national awards, including the Secretary of Education’s Award, the highest honor available to vocational programs. ShopRite is also an annual sponsor of the New Jersey Special Olympics Games, providing logistical, volunteer and food support for these annual events that attract more than 1,800 athletes and 20,000 attendees....
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St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner, and while the rest of the celebrating world seems to look forward to corned beef and cabbage, I’m rather partial to colcannon. The perfect mix of fluffy mashed potatoes and buttery cabbage, I could sit and finish off a bowl of this and nothing else while everyone else delves into soda bread and tea. (more)...
Last week my son and his friend had the chance to visit our favorite local ShopRite for a free kids nutrition education session offered by ShopRite’s in-store Registered Dietitian. (more)...
Charles Gallagher joined the Wakefern Food Corp. cooperative in the fall of 2012. His family business, Gallagher Family Markets, owns and operates the ShopRite of Selden, New York.Charles Gallagher joined the Wakefern Food Corp. cooperative in the fall of 2012. His family business, Gallagher Family Markets, owns and operates the ShopRite of Selden, New York.
A 40-year supermarket industry veteran, Mr. Gallagher began his career as a teenager, collecting carts at New Jersey-based Eickhoff Supermarkets, a family-owned business that operates stores in Southern New Jersey. After graduating from St Joseph’s University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Food Marketing, Mr. Gallagher joined the Kroger Co., serving in various retail management positions in Texas, Louisiana and California. He is also a graduate of the University of Southern California Food Industry Management Program.
Mr. Gallagher joined former Wakefern member Big V Supermarkets in 1993 where he served in various operations and merchandising positions with responsibility for supermarket locations throughout New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Pennsylvania. In 1998, the Eickhoff family joined Wakefern and Mr. Gallagher returned to Eickhoff , where he served as general manager for several years.
With the opening of the ShopRite of Selden, Mr. Gallagher becomes a Wakefern member himself. Having recently relocated to the area, Mr. Gallagher looks forward to contributing to the strong sense of community in Selden. A longtime supporter of initiatives to end hunger and to raise funds for the American Cancer Society, he has also worked to raise funds for and volunteered his time toward youth athletics and scholarship programs.
Joining Mr. Gallagher in this business venture are his wife, Judy, and their children, as well as his brothers William Gallagher, who will serve as store manager and James Gallagher, who will oversee the initial training of new associates. Collectively, the Gallagher family brings more than 100 years of supermarket industry experience to the business....
Did you know ShopRite has been active in environmental and community initiatives for more than three decades? It’s true!
We have always considered environmental sustainability the “right thing to do.” Click here for some annual facts and figures. Read on to find out about the steps we have taken to minimize our impact on the environment, and in the communities we serve!
Grocery Bags- Choose to Reduce, Reuse, Recycle!
ShopRite has promoted grocery bag waste reduction for many years. We are all about choice and offer three carry out grocery bag options (paper, plastic and reusable “canvas”). Reusing, recycling and reducing the number of bags used means less trash is sent to the landfill and fewer resources are needed to create new bags. ShopRite also makes it easy for customers to recycle plastic bags, along with other flexible plastic packaging including product bags, bread bags, and case wraps, by providing recycling bins at the front of every store.
A year ago we introduced the How2Recycle label on our paper and plastic carry-out bags. It is designed to remind ShopRite customers to recycle or reuse their bags. How about making origami, a school book cover, or a pirate hat out of your next paper grocery bag? Find out more about How2Recycle at how2recycle.info.
Food Waste Reduction
Did you know…..ShopRite composted more than 14,500 tons of materials in 2015 alone? It’s true! Add to that all of the food we donate to food banks and local pantries and we are making incredible progress as we reduce our environmental impact and feed hungry people.
ShopRite Earth Day Challenge
Each year, ShopRite conducts its own “ShopRite Earth Day Challenge.” This annual event challenges volunteers to beautify their communities by cleaning up litter from local parks and beaches, and planting flowers. To date, over 31,000 volunteers – all wearing gloves and using trash bags donated by ShopRite– have participated in Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania. Call 1-800 ShopRite to receive free materials for your next community clean up!
Our Very Own Recycling Center
Did you know…..ShopRite has recycled more than 1.8 MILLION tons of materials to date? It’s true, ShopRite has long been active in keeping other materials out of the waste stream. Since the 1970’s, we have operated our own recycling center in Elizabeth, New Jersey. The facility, operates 16 hours a day, six days a week, and recycles all kinds of materials from our stores.
ShopRite Earth News
To help educate our customers and communities, ShopRite publishes an environmental newsletter called ShopRite Earth News. Since 2000, this award-winning publication informs ShopRite customers on how they can become more “green” through reducing their own energy use, composting at home to reduce waste and other ways they can help reduce their impact on the environment. We also include retail examples, so you know all of the things our sustainable ShopRite stores are doing to go green. Click here to view ShopRite Earth News 2016.
Philanthropy is not a new idea for Wakefern. One example is our “Partners in Caring Program” designed to fight hunger. But did you know that we have helped a number of environmental non-government organizations (E-NGO’s) for a number of years? Click here to find out who they are!
Colgate / TerraCycle Playgrounds
TerraCycle and Colgate have partnered with ShopRite to help local elementary schools earn a brand new playground. In 2015, Flanders Elementary School was the lucky winner of the fully sustainable and colorful new playground. The school in Southington, Connecticut won the ShopRite/Colgate Recycled Playground Challenge, an exclusive contest for schools in the states of New Jersey, Pennsylvania, New York, Connecticut, Delaware and Maryland. In 2014, the BelovED Community Charter Scholl in Jersey City, New Jersey, was the proud recipient of a playground installed on their school grounds.<br><br>“We are proud to connect with our vendor partners, like Colgate, to help deliver this incredible opportunity to schools in our local communities,” said Chris Skyers, Vice President of Health and Beauty Care for ShopRite stores. Open to all public and private schools, preschools, colleges and universities in the ShopRite service area, students compete by recycling the most “unrecyclable items” they can. Items include commonly considered unrecyclable items, like toothpaste tubes, toothbrushes, and floss containers. The winning school’s playground is amazingly made out of these very items by the teams at Terracycle....